Consensus should determine what's taught in science classes. Why?

This is about why it should not be taught in science instead now. If your reason is going to be because there is not a scientific consensus, then you can explain to be why we should make the scientific consensus the gatekeeper of what is science and what should be taught in science classes.

I am really curious why you guys rely on a popular contest among experts to determine scientific truth. In the last topic, you guys did not really explain why this should be the case.

Again, please refrain from making objections that claim the Orch-theory of consciousness is not science. You have shown you are not competent enough to make that judgement on their theory and you had your chance in the last topic.

Moreover, the Common Design theory that I described before is virtually the same as mainstream evolution and their theory. The only 3 differences between Orch-theory, evolution, and Common Design. There were at least 11 separate creation events instead of just one and top-down processes were involved in those separate creation events. Lastly, the precursor consciousness is a human who is perfect. That’s it!

I look forward to everyone’s arguments. :slight_smile:

Those are two separate things. The criteria for science do not include “is the consensus”, and that’s a whole separate discussion. The criteria for being taught in science classes are different, and “is the consensus” is a good one, as agreement among scientists is a reasonable way to estimate what can be presented as true. Sometimes this consensus will be wrong, but there is no better tool available.

It may be science, though I’m dubious. What clearly is not science, however, is your attempt to draw a theory of creation from it.

It isn’t, not at all. But as I’ve mentioned before, your common design theory is too incoherent to address, and you don’t learn anyway. I’m certain you won’t learn from this post.

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“You have shown that you are not competent enough to make that judgement.”

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It doesn’t do anything useful.

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Do you know what a consensus means?

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Which you never demonstrated to be the case.

In that case, since you were incapable of pinpointed a single area in my presentation that suggest an inherently unscientific, can you at least pinpoint the differences between my theory and the Orch-OR theory?

Here are snippets from their peer-reviewed articles so you can evaluate for yourself:

"(B) Consciousness is a separate quality, distinct from physical actions and not controlled by physical laws, that has always been in the universe. Descartes’ ‘dualism’, religious viewpoints, and other spiritual approaches assume consciousness has been in the universe all along, e.g. as the ‘ground of being’, ‘creator’ or component of an omnipresent ‘God’ . In this view consciousness can causally influence physical matter and human behavior, but has no basis or description in science. In another approach, panpsychism attributes consciousness to all matter, but without scientific identity or causal influence. Idealism contends consciousness is all that exists, the material world (and science) being an illusion. In all these views, consciousness lies outside science… "

“…Nonetheless, in the Orch OR scheme, these events are taken to have a rudimentary subjective experience, which is undifferentiated and lacking in cognition, perhaps providing the constitutive ingredients of what philosophers call qualia. We term such un-orchestrated, ubiquitous OR events, lacking information and cognition, ‘proto-conscious’. In this regard, Orch OR has some points in common with the viewpoint (B) of Section 1, which incorporates spiritualist, idealist and panpsychist elements, these being argued to be essential precursors of consciousness that are intrinsic to the universe.” [Emphasis added]

Consciousness in the universe: A review of the ‘Orch OR’ theory - ScienceDirect

Whitehead’s low-level ‘dull’ occasions of experience would seem to correspond to our to non-orchestrated ‘proto-conscious’ OR events. According to the DP scheme, OR processes would be taking place all the time everywhere and, normally involving the random environment, would be providing the effective randomness that is characteristic of quantum measurement. Quantum superpositions will continually be reaching the DP threshold for OR in non-biological settings as well as in biological ones…” [Emphasis added]
Journal of Cosmology (thejournalofcosmology.com)

Read further into this source to understand what Whitehead’s process philosophy involves so you can understand more on why they are virtually the same:

‘Whitehead enumerated three essential natures of God . The primordial nature of God consists of all potentialities of existence for actual occasions, which Whitehead dubbed eternal objects. God can offer possibilities by ordering the relevance of eternal objects. The consequent nature of God prehends everything that happens in reality. As such, God experiences all of reality in a sentient manner. The last nature is the superjective . This is the way in which God’s synthesis becomes a sense-datum for other actual entities. In some sense, God is prehended by existing actual entities.’

Process philosophy - Wikipedia

"Accordingly, our picture is that Orch OR underlies full conscious experience with perceptions and choices influenced by noncomputable Platonic values intrinsic to the structure of the universe.
The origin of eukaryotic animal cells 1.3 billion years ago is suggested to have been a symbiotic event in which motile spirochetes invaded bacterial prokaryotes, spirochetal flagellae being the apparent origin of microtubules which provided movement and internal organization to previously immobile cells (Margulis & Sagan, 1995).

As OR events in microtubules became more orchestrated over the course of evolution, the content of conscious experience became more cognitively useful, e.g., representative of the external world, and pleasurable, e.g., food, sex. Pursuit of positive conscious experience would foster survival. Optimization of Orch OR in conscious experience and associated noncomputational effects per se may be driving evolution."

Accordingly, one might speculate that the onset of Orch OR and primitive consciousness, albeit exceedingly slow and simple but still with useful conscious moments, precipitated the accelerated evolution of the Cambrian explosion. Only at a much later evolutionary stage would the selective advantages of a capability for genuine understanding come about, requiring the non-computability of Orch OR that goes beyond mere quantum computation, and depends upon larger scale infrastructure of efficiently functioning MTs, capable of operating quantum-computational processes." [Emphasis added]

b2237_Ch-14.indd (arizona.edu)

Useless without the actual citations. But it looks like quote-mining to me, and I don’t think you understand what the bolded bits are supposed to mean. Even together, even interpreted as you think, they don’t connect Orch OR to Jesus or to creation.

You will both ignore what I’m saying and fail to understand it.

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That’s not the reason.

The main reason your ‘theory’ should not be taught in science is because it’s poorly written claptrap.

Your history of misrepresenting your sources is another reason.

So it is not virtually the same as mainstream evolution theory, which doesn’t have any separate creation events. You don’t seem to know enough about mainstream science to perform the comparison.

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I must say that I can’t pinpoint any area, because the entire thing is inherently unscientific.

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I have decided to restructure what I said at the start of post 45 in the last topic Why cannot both Design and Descent be taught in science classes - Peaceful Science after what @Paul_King pointed out regarding my lack of explanation on how the observational evidence provides support for the thesis statement. So I am going to connect the dots on the line of evidence I listed before and provide a much more detailed explanation. Hopefully then, you guys will finally pinpoint exactly where my theory is unscientific. So let’s try this again shall we everyone…

@Dan_Eastwood @John_Harshman @djkriese @swamidass @Andrew_Christianson @AllenWitmerMiller @RonSewell @Rumraket @T_aquaticus

Universal Consciousness

Well first off, here is a source of an experiment that demonstrates that it is not the measuring device that fundamentally causes the collapse of the wavefunction:

The Experimental Demonstration of High Efficiency Interaction-free Measurement for Quantum Counterfactual-like Communication | Scientific Reports (nature.com)

Now, the quantum eraser and double-slit experiments are pretty much the same with one key difference. In the quantum eraser, they look to see if our observation is really what causes particles to collapse, as suggested by the experiment in question:

"In an interferometric quantum eraser experiment, one can actively choose whether or not to erase which-path information, a particle feature, of one quantum system and thus observe its wave feature via interference or not by performing a suitable measurement on a distant quantum system entangled with it.

In all experiments performed to date, this choice took place either in the past or, in
some delayed-choice arrangements, in the future of the interference. Thus, in principle, physical
communications between choice and interference were not excluded. Here we report a quantum
eraser experiment, in which by enforcing Einstein locality no such communication is possible. This is achieved by independent active choices, which are space-like separated from the interference.

1206.6578v2.pdf (arxiv.org)

In other words, what causes collapse is knowledge and knowledge require a knower::

“…the values that you obtain when you measure its properties depend on the context. So the value of property A, say, depends on whether you chose to measure it with property B, or with property C. In other words, there is no reality independent of the choice of measurement”.

To be clear, I am not suggesting that the consciousness of the observer physically and directly caused the collapse under measurement like some sort of ESP psychic power. Instead, it is to show that the conscious observer plays a fundamental role in causing the collapse. There is a difference.

When you combine the 34 with the 47 respondents according to this much larger poll, it shows that this is what majority of physicists believe is the case:

Question 5: In your opinion the observer

a. Is a complex (quantum) system:

57

b. Should play no fundamental role whatsoever:

15

c. Plays a fundamental role in the application of the formalism but plays no distinguished physical role:

47

d. Plays a distinguished physical role (e.g., wave-function collapse by consciousness):

34

b2237_Ch-14.indd (arizona.edu)

On the other hand, the evidence supporting the Orch-OR theory goes a step further in establishing that the consciousness of the observer also has the distinguished role of collapsing the wave function because consciousness under Orch-OR is quantum mechanical in nature. This is what they mean by having a distinguished physical role from the measurement apparatus:

“…The violation of the classical weight structure is similar to the violation of the well-known Bell inequalities studied in quantum mechanics, and hence suggests that the quantum formalism and hence the modeling by quantum membership weights, as for example in [18], can accomplish what classical membership weights cannot do.”

Experimental Evidence for Quantum Structure in Cognition | SpringerLink

Thus, only the conscious observer has the ability to choose which aspect of nature his knowledge will probe, which is what the results of quantum physics experiments like “quantum erasure with casually DISCONNECTED choice” reveal. The non-local conscious mind is the only true measurement apparatus that performs measurements first on the brain to simultaneous cause a collapse to the wave function.

Moreover, there are other experiments that show how the choice of measurement in one lab really causes a change in the local wave-function in the other lab instantaneously : “That is, according to the theory, the detection at one point must instantaneously collapse the wavefunction to nothing at all other points.” From this experiment, we can also deduce that consciousness is universal or has the ability to be casually active everywhere via quantum entanglement.

Experimental proof of nonlocal wavefunction collapse for a single particle using homodyne measurements | Nature Communications

However, since we are contingent conscious minds, this obviously does not give a full explanation for how humans got here. So we need evidence that a non-contingent being exist. This leads me to explain how the evidence showing the Reproduction of the Common Descent Patterns and how The wave-function is real and non-local suggests that a non-contingent consciousness created life on earth. For instance, this prebiotic experiment demonstrated how self-replicating RNA molecules can “evolve into complex living systems by expanding their information and functions open-endedly”.

Evolutionary transition from a single RNA replicator to a multiple replicator network | Nature Communications

This suggests that the creation of simple to complex life on earth was by a universal consciousness, which is what the Orch-OR theory invokes for both the origin and development of life:

Ch20-9780124201903_aq 1…1 (galileocommission.org)

b2237_Ch-14.indd (arizona.edu)

More importantly, the digital information harbored in life is immaterial and non-local because we have evidence that the wave-function is real and non-local:

Measurements on the reality of the wavefunction | Nature Physics

Quantum-nonlocality at all speeds – ScienceDaily [Secondary source]

This means that we have a basis to infer that a non-contingent universal consciousness created and developed life on earth.

Empirical basis and Practical applications for Common Designer theory

Now, the only real difference between the two theories is that the Common Design theory suggests that the Universal non-contingent consciousness described in Orch-OR theory is a Common Designer or a human being like us who is perfect. But, we have good evidence that this is likely the nature of this conscious agent. For example, Genomes appear to have “remarkable similarities to natural languages” and “systems biology shares many aspects in common with computer systems engineering”:

Grammar of protein domain architectures | PNAS

Survey of Engineering Models for Systems Biology (hindawi.com)

Moreover, the number of alleged design flaws that were found to be optimal is so high that it strongly suggests that this being has no flaws or limitations in character or will [just ask for references]. This means that what looks like a flaw may actually be the result of practical limitations caused by tradeoffs between conflicting design objectives.

For example, cars will be heavily damaged by collisions at just 30 mph, so why aren’t bumpers designed to be big enough to absorb the impact without damage to the rest of the vehicle? Or why aren’t bumpers on the sides of the cars as well? (Lindsay, Jeff. 2005).

Thus, this would supposedly be deemed a design flaw by critics, but there are new problems created in other areas when we make bumpers larger or heavier or place them on the sides. According to a professional engineer, there are practical limitations to the width and length of vehicles, and heavier bumpers can reduce gas mileage and the maneuverability of the vehicle (Lindsay, Jeff. 2005).

The reality is virtually every feature in a designed structure such as a car is a compromise between competing objectives: safety, comfort, aesthetics, cost, ease of manufacturing, ease of repair (an objective often overlooked), stability, speed and acceleration, and so forth. Generally, not every desirable objective can be met. (Lindsay, Jeff. 2005).

He goes on to explain that someone who thinks they can propose a change for a minor improvement in one design objective is hardly noteworthy, especially when those who make that point probably have little experience with design or engineering, for it is well known that “simple” changes in complex systems often have major, hard-to-predict consequences - a fact that engineers learn over and over as they design and try new machines and products.

Another example of this is the paper industry where a small change in one part of a paper machine may lead to disaster elsewhere in the papermaking process. The interconnectedness and complexity of a paper machine is nothing compared to the human body. Thus, before we assume that we have spotted a “design flaw,” we need to know the consequences of “fixing” the flaw (Lindsay, Jeff. 2005).

Lindsay, J. (2005). Design Flaws versus Intelligent Design: The Pentor. JeffLindsay.com Intelligent Design and Design Flaws: Jury-Rigged Design in Nature?

In Summary

Here is my thesis statement again and the evidence supporting it…

Because a Universal Consciousness [A] [C] must exist to create life of any kind [B], the creation and development of life on earth is best explained by a Perfect [D] Common Designer [E].

The evidence supporting a Quantum mechanical Mind [A]:

Quantum structure is in cognition

The wave-function is ontologically real

The evidence supporting the necessity of this being [B]:

The interaction-free experiments
Lenski experiment
Metabolism-first experiments
Quantum erasure with causally disconnected choice
Reproduction of Common Descent Patterns

The evidence supporting the universality of this being [C]:

Experimental proof of non-local wave-function collapse

Quantum Non-locality at all speeds

The evidence supporting the perfect character and will of this being [D]:

The Alleged design flaws that are found to be optimal

The evidence supporting the common attributes of this being [E]:

Reproduction of Common Descent Patterns

In Conclusion

It has been repeatedly found that what initially seemed to be design flaws caused by an unguided process instead of a divine agent turned out not to be flaws at all with increasing understanding of the design. In fact, an article has even suggested that this current evolutionary framework and perspective is actually impeding scientific advancement and causing practical difficulties:

“However, with a growing number of instances of pseudogene-annotated regions later found to exhibit biological function, there is an emerging risk that these regions of the genome are prematurely dismissed as pseudogenic and therefore regarded as void of function.”

Overcoming challenges and dogmas to understand the functions of pseudogenes | Nature Reviews Genetics

This realization solidifies the grounds for using modeling formalisms from the engineering subdisciplines and apply them to biological systems. In future, it will be paramount for scientists to reexamine the remaining claims of design flaws by looking at the organism as a whole, even if it exhibits some features that may be perplexing, rather than make an argument from ignorance or personal incredulity. By encouraging researchers to look at the overall design and purpose of an organism as well as expand and test different environmental conditions, the aim is to accelerate scientific discoveries and to prove this explanatory mechanism exist beyond a reasonable doubt.

Therefore, if the Common Designer theory has no empirical basis and application outside the bible as suggested by @Dan_Eastwood or unscientific as suggested by @John_Harshman, then someone would need to explain why what I just presented does not cut the mustard.

One more thing, I have decided to omit my claim that the Common Designer is Jesus Christ for now since it’s causing a lot of confusion as to whether I am presenting a scientific proposition or not.

If you don’t see anything wrong with teaching this level of education on quantum mechanics, then how do you know that including the Orch-OR theory into the textbooks would require a deeper understanding of quantum mechanics than Quantum information science?

Of course, this presupposes that the scientific process that involves the consensus is entirely or primarily objective, but this is not necessarily the case. For instance, the famous philosopher and historian of science (as well as a physicist), Thomas Kuhn, in “The Structure of Scientific Revolutions,” notes that scientific consensus occur through “replacement” where new scientists, attracted to the new paradigm, become open to its ideas, and old guards of the old paradigm, still unable to explain the quirks in their data, simply retire and naturally exit from the scientific community. Until that replacement happens, however, skepticism and opposition persists. Max Planck, the founder of quantum physcists, concurs:

“A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.”

This principle, which was famously laid out by German theoretical physicist Max Planck in 1950 along with Thomas Kuhn, has actually been confirmed according to a new study.

What evidence do you have that shows how this claim that “agreement among scientists is a reasonable way to estimate what can be presented as true” is true itself and is there a consensus that even agrees with that statement?

Right, according to Orch-theory, this is the universal consciousness at work. Remember, what I said before, there are other experiments that show how the choice of measurement in one lab really causes a change in the local wave-function in the other lab instantaneously : “That is, according to the theory, the detection at one point must instantaneously collapse the wavefunction to nothing at all other points.” From this experiment, we can also deduce that consciousness is universal or has the ability to be casually active everywhere via quantum entanglement.

Dust particles out in space are collapsing the wave function of photons all of the time with no consciousness involved.

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Can you provide us with a single scientific article that makes this argument or presents this reasoning?

If not, why should it be taught in science class?

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No, it presupposes no such thing. Consensus is by no means perfect. It’s just that there is no better way. You have proposed nothing other than that, apparently, your brilliance should be recognized as a matter of course and your brilliant theories should be taught because they’re brilliant, and you say so, so there. I don’t think that’s a better criterion than scientific consensus.

In other words, you propose an infinite regress. Not playing that game.

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When you look at a nebula you are seeing the result of a particle in space absorbing a photon and re-emitting a photon.

For that matter, every photon of sunlight is the result of a particle absorbing a photon and re-emitting a new photon.

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So, to sum up your attempt to support your claims it seems that none of the sources you cite are adequate. When they offer any support at all.

Not even the blog post by an Intelligent Design supporter goes as far as your assertions.

Wild speculations mixed with religious apologetics do not belong in science classes.

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Scientists are the gatekeepers of what is science. That’s the way it should be. A scientific consensus is an agreement among scientists that a specific idea is scientific and is supported by evidence.

Why should the scientific consensus be taught in high school? Because you have to know the current state of scientific theory if you are going to work in science or want to understand where science currently sits. If you want to change the scientific consensus after you get a degree in a scientific field and put in the requisite work then you first have to understand what that consensus is.

High school isn’t the proper place for teaching the bleeding edge of scientific research because it will fly over the head of every student. They need to learn the basics, and that would be the foundational scientific consensus in any given field. More to the point, high school students barely understand what science is, so they usually aren’t able to detect pseudoscience when it is put in front of them.

Present it to the scientific community, convince them the theory is correct, and then propose to have it taught in high schools.

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I don’t know. I took a course in deviant psychological types in college and we studied just that sort of phenomenon.

Here’s my suggestion.

The Christian churches should teach Islamic theology. The Christian consensus should not control what is taught by the churches.

Absurd? Yes, of course that is absurd. And I am not really suggesting it. But the idea of teaching creationist ideas in the science class is every bit as absurd.

A huge mistake that I often notice with conservative Christian commentary, is a failure to understand the difference between education and indoctrination. The creationists seem to think that we are indoctrinating students. We aren’t. We are teaching methodology, not doctrine.

You worry about what is presented as true. Science is not about what is true. Science is about what works. A lot of science teaching as about methods that have proven themselves successful over time.

My own area is mathematics. What we teach is methods. If a student memorizes a lot of mathematical truths, that student will probably fail. What the student needs to learn is how to attack a problem. Learning facts won’t do that. And consensus is a pretty good way of deciding what methods have proven themselves successful.

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The issue here is that you have provided us with NO evidence relating to the reality of these 11 supposed creation events. If that is what you want taught in schools, then you need to defend that as a credible concept, which you have not tried to do.

top-down processes were involved in those separate creation events.

You need to do two things here: you need to provide evidence that biological mechanisms cannot account for diversity of species, and you need to provide evidence for “creation events.”

The best I have seen you offer on this topic is a few unsourced claims about Lenski’s LTEE experiment:

(B) The Lenski’s experiment did not produce the same positive result in his 11 other populations.

This is a non-objection. First, talking about the LTEE experiment in past-tense is strange considering it is ongoing. But more importantly, 12 populations underwent extensive phenotypic and genotypic changes. Evolution doesn’t claim speciation happens to every population every time, it just predicts that it happens.

(C) The Lenski experiment did not produce speciation or an entire genome of information (i.e. tells the cell how to maintain information or how to pass it on to the next generation).

The Lenski experiment (again, ongoing) is not meant to produce speciation or entire genomes of information.

Lastly, the precursor consciousness is a human who is perfect. That’s it!

I addressed this in its own comment.

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